When there isn’t a solution to the problem, invent it. That was the mindset of Johann Barlach and Casey Flynn when they created Cobar Systems. The idea for their venture began while Johann was on co-op in the business continuity department of a large financial services firm located here in Boston.
“While working [at this large financial services firm], I realized there was a huge demand for new products,” explains Johann. “Not only are a lot of the current product offerings outdated, but the industry is rapidly growing and in need of new software solutions.”
One of Johann’s responsibilities was to compile reports from various departments that tested their business continuity strategies. After finding the process time consuming and current software ineffective, Johann saw a value in developing a solution himself. From there, Johann reached out to his friend, Casey, and they began developing Cobar Systems.
Cobar’s first application, Themis, is what Johann envisioned while working on his coop, designed to combat the business continuity problems companies can often face.
“Themis is a management system for business continuity exercises, providing tools to prepare, execute, and record exercises, which improves and validates recovery strategies in organizations as a result,” says Johann. “The concept for Themis is a combination of work experience, market research, and workability.”
Themis’ unique feature is compatibility. Many of Themis’ competitors are windows-based, but while technology continues to develop, Johann and Casey believe there must be more options available. Themis can be utilized on all browsers, smartphones, and tablets to ensure exercises facilitate more efficiently.
Business development has also proved to be a learning curve for both Johann and Casey, soon discovering that startups don’t appear overnight. After joining IDEA this past March, Johann, a Business Administration major at Northeastern, and Casey, a Computer Science and Business major, have been working full-time to make Cobar a success. As young entrepreneurs, this requires both to be involved in all areas of the business.
What’s next for Cobar? Themis is currently in the development stage and will be tentatively launched this fall. Keep your eyes out for great things from Cobar!